Xenophobia increases, racial outlooks harden in Gauteng – survey

2014-08-14 14:19

Levels of xenophobia and intolerance of foreigners is increasing in Gauteng, a survey released today has found. The research also indicated tough racial attitudes – more than 70% of Africans surveyed said they would never trust whites.

“Thirty-five percent of all respondents said [we should] send all foreigners home now,” Gauteng City-Region Observatory executive director Professor David Everatt said.

“Xenophobia is on the rise, especially in Tshwane. Tshwane has actually done well in terms of service delivery.”

Everatt was releasing the results of a survey conducted on the quality of life in Gauteng.

The observatory – a partnership between the University of Johannesburg, the University of the Witwatersrand, the Gauteng government and the South African Local Government Association – conducted the study with more than 25 000 people to find satisfaction levels with governance.

The survey also found there was a hardening of racial attitudes, with 73% of Africans agreeing or strongly agreeing that they would never trust whites.

“This third survey in the sequence is probably the largest ever survey of social attitudes in Gauteng, with a sample of 27 493 respondents, and is accurate to ward level,” he said.

“This remarkably powerful data set has been analysed and mapped at city-region, city, and ward level to give both overview results and fine-grained ward-level comparisons.”

Key findings of the survey included high levels of satisfaction with many areas of service delivery but coupled with very low levels of satisfaction with the government and governance, indicating that service delivery alone was not enough, said Everatt.

“[There was] deep dissatisfaction with the local sphere in particular, across the board, suggesting that the 2016 local elections are going to be very keenly fought,” he said.

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